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Price Level Changes and the Redistribution of Nominal Wealth Across the Euro Area

Author

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  • Adam, Klaus
  • Zhu, Junyi

Abstract

We document the presence of sizable distributional effects from unexpected price level movements in the Euro Area (EA) using sectoral accounts and newly available data from the Household Finance and Consumption Survey. The EA as a whole is a net winner of unexpected price level increases, with Italy, Greece, Portugal and Spain being the biggest beneficiaries, and Belgium and Malta being the largest losers. Governments are net winners of inflation, while the household (HH) sector is a net loser in the EA as a whole. HHs in Belgium, Ireland, Malta and Germany incur the biggest per capita losses, while HHs in Finland and Spain turn out to be net winners of inflation. Considerable heterogeneity exists also within the HH sector: relatively young middle class HHs are net winners of inflation, while older and richer HHs are losers. As a result, wealth inequality in the EA decreases with unexpected inflation, although in some countries (Austria, Germany and Malta) inequality increases due to presence of relatively few young borrowing HHs. We document that HHs inflation exposure varies systematically across countries, with HHs in high inflation EA countries holding systematically lower nominal exposures.

Suggested Citation

  • Adam, Klaus & Zhu, Junyi, 2014. "Price Level Changes and the Redistribution of Nominal Wealth Across the Euro Area," CEPR Discussion Papers 9987, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:9987
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Michelacci, Claudio & Paciello, Luigi, 2017. "Ambiguous Policy Announcements," CEPR Discussion Papers 11754, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Javier Villar Burke, 2016. "Stocks or flows? New thinking about monetary transmission through the lending channel," Working Papers 2016.04, International Network for Economic Research - INFER.
    3. Ampudia, Miguel & Georgarakos, Dimitris & Slacalek, Jiri & Tristani, Oreste & Vermeulen, Philip & Violante, Giovanni L., 2018. "Monetary policy and household inequality," Working Paper Series 2170, European Central Bank.
    4. Hintermaier, Thomas & Koeniger, Winfried, 2018. "Differences in Euro-Area Household Finances and their Relevance for Monetary-Policy Transmission," Economics Working Paper Series 1806, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
    5. Chiara Punzo & Lorenza Rossi, 2019. "The Redistributive Effects of a Money-Financed Fiscal Stimulus," DEM Working Papers Series 168, University of Pavia, Department of Economics and Management.
    6. Luigi Paciello & Claudio Michelacci, 2016. "Forward Misguidance," 2016 Meeting Papers 617, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Sterk, Vincent & Tenreyro, Silvana, 2015. "The Transmission of Monetary Policy through Redistributions and Durable Purchases," CEPR Discussion Papers 10785, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    8. Adam, Klaus & Tzamourani, Panagiota, 2016. "Distributional consequences of asset price inflation in the Euro Area," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 172-192.
    9. repec:bfr:rueban:2018:55 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Hatcher, Michael, 2016. "Nominal GDP targeting and the tax burden," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 1604, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    11. Galo Nuño & Carlos Thomas, 2016. "Optimal monetary policy with heterogeneous agents," Working Papers 1624, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
    12. Andrea Colciago & Anna Samarina & Jakob de Haan, 2018. "Central bank policies and income and wealth inequality: A survey," DNB Working Papers 594, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
    13. Albert, Juan-Francisco & Gómez-Fernández, Nerea, 2018. "Monetary policy and the redistribution of net worth in the US," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 91320, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    14. Michael Reiter & Philipp Hergovich, 2016. "Housing and the Redistributive Effects of Monetary Policy," 2016 Meeting Papers 1324, Society for Economic Dynamics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Euro Area; household survey; inflation; redistribution;

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation

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